State Library of Iowa, Des Moines, IA

The State Library of Iowa, in partnership with Iowa State University Extension and Ames Public Library, delivered a successful, mixed-methods (online and face-to-face), library-based financial education model to 18 underserved rural communities across Iowa.

Key Activities: 

  • Convened staff from 18 participating libraries for training on project management, marketing strategy, optimizing social media outreach, and using information resources pertaining to personal finance and investing.
  • Conducted face-to-face public classes and special events at the 18 participating libraries. Topics addressed:
    • Household budgeting
    • Financial record-keeping
    • Raising money smart kids
    • Meeting long-term financial goals
    • Using credit wisely
    • Saving strategies
    • Financial spring cleaning
    • Personal finance 101
  • Delivered six-week online courses segmented according to three generational cohorts: Starting Out (younger adults); Building Up (mid-career); and Making It Last (retirees). A capstone, face-to-face event in each location followed the online learning and brought the local libraries into partnership with community organizations. The State Library’s district field staff coordinated the concluding sessions, which combined speaker presentations with hands-on learning activities tailored to the needs and interests of local participants.

Looking to take your library’s financial literacy efforts to the next level? Connect with ALA’s Financial Literacy Interest Group.